Tokyo, March 2 (Jiji Press)–Japan’s cabinet adopted Tuesday a bill to revise the law on the fight against global warming to include the government’s target of achieving carbon neutrality in the country by 2050.
By writing the goal, announced by Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga in October last year, into the law, the government hopes to demonstrate both at home and abroad its resolve to continue efforts to tackle climate change. The move is also aimed at trying to ensure that a change of government would not lead to a shift from the decarbonization policy.
Environment Minister Shinjiro Koizumi stressed the significance of the bill at a press conference on the day, saying, “We would be able to demonstrate our commitment to the international community based on legal grounds” without failing to put the prime minister’s pledge into action.
The law obliges the government to compile programs for combating global warming. Based on the programs, the cabinet adopts concrete targets of reducing Japan’s greenhouse gas emissions.
The bill stipulates that the government’s measures against global warming must be implemented in accordance with the goal of “realizing a decarbonized society by 2050.” Cooperation among the general public, the central and local governments, and related industries is also sought.
In addition, the bill calls for allowing part of environmental impact assessment procedures to be omitted for the construction of wind, solar and other renewable energy power plants that are recognized by relevant municipal governments as good projects based on consent from local residents.
As part of the efforts to increase renewable energy use, the bill newly obliges prefectures, ordinance-designated core cities and other major cities to set their respective goals of introducing solar and wind power generation.
It also calls on municipalities to make efforts to set up areas to host renewable energy power plants.